The term “world wide web” was accurate eons ago when there were a couple thousand websites. Fast forward to today, when we’re at 1.88 billion, and it seems we may need a new term. Universe-wide galaxy? Infinitely expanding metaverse?
Anyway, I digress. As said web grows (read: proliferates), so too do data privacy laws—and businesses are tasked with balancing convenience and conversational tone with compliance.
One area where this challenge is apparent? Cookie consent banners. Read on to get the practical knowledge and creative inspiration you need to pull off a creative but compliant cookie consent banner for your website.
We’re going to cover:
- What cookies are
- What to include in your cookie consent banner
- Examples of cookie consent banners to give you ideas
But before we begin, an important disclaimer!
Now let’s get into it.
What are cookies?
Cookies are small bits of data that get stored on a user’s browser when they visit websites. A website will “set” a cookie on a user’s browser so that when the user returns to that site at a later date, the site can use the existing data (such as what they typed into a form field, what pages they browsed, what they bought, etc.) to provide a more convenient and/or more personalized experience to the user.
There are several different types of cookies: session vs. persistent; necessary vs. elective; and first-party vs. third-party. That third category is the one we’re concerned with from a marketing privacy standpoint. These, as you can imagine, are used to collect first-, second-, and third-party data.
What is a cookie consent banner?
There are several pieces of privacy legislation behind this dating all the way back to 1995, but the two biggest drivers are the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) of 2018 and the ePrivacy Directive (ePD) of 2002.
The United States as a whole does not have a federal cookie privacy law, but there are some laws on the individual state level, including the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA).
What should you put in your cookie consent banner?
According to Cookie Law Info, in order to adhere to cookie and privacy laws, your cookie consent banner must:
- Identify what cookies you use
- Inform users what cookies you use
- Obtain their consent
- Give them the ability to withdraw consent
- Record the cookie consent
There are other guidelines here, such as being clear and concise about the information, making the consent request as user-friendly as possible, and more.
Now in terms of how you go about wording your cookie consent banner, this depends on a number of things:
- The industry you’re in. And the type of business you run. While privacy is important no matter what, some industries regulate it more heavily than others. And in some industries, consumers are more in tune to it than in others.
- Your brand voice. A witty cookie banner won’t make sense if you’re a law office, but it works well for some brand personalities. Make sure that whatever tone you choose, it’s in line with your brand identity.
- The legal department in your company. Of course, larger corporations with official legal departments are going to have a handle on cookie consent, GDPR, and everything in between while a solopreneur will be the one handling it. That doesn’t mean you’re off the hook if you’re the latter; it just means that you can expect more strict adherence the larger and more established the company.
Cookie consent banner examples
We’ve broken down these cookie consent banners into:
Let’s jump in!
Fun or playful cookie consent banner examples
These examples go beyond the basic language to get cookie consent and are a little playful or fun. These examples would work as inspiration for businesses that have a more laid-back brand personality.
Life is better with cookies
Banner copy: “Life is better with cookies. Most people would agree cookies make life better. For us, they help us make our site and marketing better. But if you don’t like cookies, that’s cool – you can let us know by clicking the settings button! Allow all / Disable all / Cookie settings”
Accept all / Configure cookies / Read more”
Want a cookie?
You can consent to the use of such technologies by using the “Accept” button. Accept all cookies / Manage cookies”
To keep on botting
We’ll have to use just one tiny cookie
We won’t track your information when you visit our site. But in order to comply with your preferences, we’ll have to use just one tiny cookie so you’re not asked to make this choice again. Accept / Decline”
Basic, yet clear, cookie consent banners
These cookie consent banners are very straightforward and to the point. They would work as inspiration for pretty much any business.
Banner copy: “By clicking “Accept All Cookies”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts. Cookies Settings / Accept All Cookies”
We use tools
Banner copy: “We use tools to track, analyze, and personalize your experience and ads, and share data with affiliates. See cookie notice. Accept / Manage”
By using our website
Cookie consent banners with a focus on the user
These cookie consent banner examples provide additional options or context for the user when selecting their preferences.
Select your preference
Banner copy: “Select your preference. Minimal / Allow some / Allow all / Time period
You agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts. Data shared with 3rd parties may be used to track you on this site and other sites your visit. / Save my preferences”
We value your privacy
Small text files
Best possible experience
About cookies on this site
Banner copy: “About cookies on this site. Our websites require some cookies to function properly (required). In addition, other cookies may be used with your consent to analyze site usage, improve the user experience and for advertising.
For more information, please review your Cookie preferences options and our privacy statement.
To provide a smooth navigation, your cookie preferences will be shared across our web domains listed here. Accept all / Required only”
Prioritize your customer data privacy
Customer data privacy is not something to mess around with. Be sure to work with your legal department to get all of your processes, documents, and copy in order and then use these ideas to get a banner up on your site that is received well by your visitors.